Attachments and Expectations

From the very beginning, Pip has always been a traveler and visitor, and never a resident. His association with structures and architecture thus differs from all other characters. When Pip is introduced, he is playing in the cemetery where the rest of his family is buried. In a way, graveyards can be thought of as residences, but they are meant for the dead. Perhaps because of this, Pip is destined to never find somewhere truly his own.

Pip has places he lives in- the forge, Barnard Inn, the Pocket residence, the Temple- but he never forms an attachment to any one in particular. He often ends up living with people who are his close friends- mainly Herbert Pocket, but never anyone close enough to call family. Throughout his life, he is constantly moving from residence to residence, none of which he ever owns.

Similarly, as Pip moves, he carries with him his expectations, yet the places he stays hardly reflect them. Barnard Inn is a good example of this, as it ends up being a dreary disappointment that dispels some of the grand notions Pip has about living in London. As soon as he arrives, he finds the place to be old, dusty, and on the verge of collapse; on top of that it is an inn, not even a proper apartment or house, which implies that it is but temporary living quarters.

I think Pip’s lack of attachment to places means he places greater significance in his relationships to other people- going as far as projecting his expectations on them. He latches onto Estella, or the idea of her, as soon as he meets her. He comes up with various theories about his benefactor, including believing it is Miss Havisham, and ends up greatly disappointed when he learns it is Magwitch. The same can be said of Herbert, as Pip first thinks Herbert will never amount to much compared to himself.

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